Skip to main content

Boston (Mass.). Inspectional Services Department


Historical note

The Inspectional Services Department was established by Chapter 19 of the Ordinances of 1981. Inspectional Services holds and exercises all powers and duties imposed on it by law including but not limited to duties formerly held and exercised by the Building Commissioner and the Housing Inspection Commissioner. The Inspectional Services Department (ISD) is comprised of five regulatory divisions whose aim is to protect and improve the quality of life for all Boston residents by effectively administering and enforcing building, housing, health, sanitation and safety regulations mandated by City and State governments.

Found in 14 Collections and/or Records:

Building Commissioner subject files

Identifier: 5410.007
Scope and Contents

Subject files of the Building Commissioner. Includes correspondence, reports, plans, etc.

Dates: circa 1958-1985

Building permit files (Microfilmed jackets)

Identifier: 5410.015
Dates: circa 1900-1980

Building permit plans

Identifier: 5410.004
Scope and Contents The Building permit plans series includes building plans that were submitted to the Inspectional Services Department (formerly the Building Department) for approval by the Building Inspector. Building plans and plot plans are required to be submitted with the long-form permit application which is used for new construction and updates to existing buildings. The Building Inspector reviews the plans prior to the issuance of the building permit. This series includes plans submitted in paper...
Dates: circa 1883-1995; Majority of material found in 1902-1995

Certificates of Use and Occupancy

Identifier: 5410.005
Scope and Contents

Files from 1972-2002 arranged alphabetically by address. Files from 2003-2014 are arranged chronologically. Files generally include copy of the certificate, inspection reports and other materials submitted during the application process.

Dates: 1972-2014 with gaps

Code Enforcement case files

Identifier: 5410.020
Scope and Contents

Arranged by address. Includes photographs.

Dates: 1968-1970

Commissioner William Good records

Identifier: 5400.001
Scope and Contents

Correspondence and subject files of Commissioner William Good who served from 2004-2011. This collection is unprocessed.

Dates: 2006-2011

Commissioner's bulletins

Identifier: 5400.002
Dates: 1986-2001

Demolished building permit files ("Takedowns")

Identifier: 5410.001
Scope and Contents

Building permit files of demolished buildings, also called "Takedowns." File jacket usually includes original building permit, permits for repair or renovation, violation notices, correspondence and permit to repair or raze (Takedown permit).

Dates: circa 1880s-1990s

Demolished building (takedowns) photographs

Identifier: 5410.002
Scope and Contents

Photograph files of buildings ordered razed by the City of Boston. Photographs document condition of building just prior to demolition and usually include photograph of lot after demolition.

Dates: circa 1950-1990

Division of Health Inspections records

Identifier: 5430.001
Scope and Contents note

Includes copies of permits issued for milk wholesalers, funeral directors, sale of frozen desserts, massage/vapor baths, etc., circa 1977-1988; complaints of violations, circa 1978- 1986; and temporary food service applications, 1992-1994. This collection is unprocessed.

Dates: 1969-1994

Housing Inspection Department publications

Identifier: 5440.002
Scope and Contents

Reports produced by the Housing Inspection Department.

Dates: 1971, undated

Housing Inspection Division records

Identifier: 5440.001
Scope and Contents

Includes administrative files, complaint case files, financial records, etc. This collection is unprocessed.

Dates: circa 1956-1991

Inspectional Services Department publications

Identifier: 5400.003
Dates: 2001

Weights and Measures Division measuring tools

Identifier: 5490.001
Dates: undated